A Vine Lesson

Grapevines offer metaphor for life



As we again enter a wintery time of year, I can’t help recalling the unexpected late frost that hit our state early in the growing season. No one was certain how the unusual weather event would affect the grapevines and subsequent yields come harvest time. A collective worry nagged our wine industry.

Media outlets broadcast grim proclamations of doom and gloom, predicting the Willamette Valley would lose 50 percent of the anticipated grape crops. These stories heightened concerns and speculation. For months, they were the industry’s primary focus and all everyone talked about. (Read June’s Freaky Frost article to learn how we reported the news.)

Now, with harvest over, we discovered frost did not cause the foretold damage; wine growers reported yields on par with previous years. Some even harvested an abundance of grapes. Maybe the plants had surged into overdrive in an attempt to overcompensate for any damage.

I believe the lesson learned this year is to avoid jumping to conclusions. In fact, this strikes me as a wonderful metaphor– not just for wine– but also life. I am striving to adopt this attitude in my everyday thoughts and interactions and have found it quite freeing. With less worry and supposition, my days feel brighter and more positive. As we move indoors for another long winter, I encourage you to do the same and see how you feel.

This holiday season, I wish you merry everything and a happy always!

Michele Francisco spent her childhood reading and writing, eventually graduating from UCLA with an English degree. She attended graphic design school and began a career in design and marketing. After moving to Oregon in 2010, Michele studied wine at Chemeketa Community College and began Winerabble, a Northwest-focused wine blog. She has been a cheerleader for Oregon wine since her arrival.

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